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About Buster Hein

Buster HeinBuster Hein is Cult of Mac's Senior News Editor and lives in Phoenix, Arizona. Twitter: @bst3r.

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IFTTT’s new ‘Do’ apps simplify everything — including its ridiculous name

IFTTT is now a multi-app company. Photo: Buster Hein/Cult of Mac

IFTTT is now a multi-app company. Photo: Buster Hein/Cult of Mac

IFTTT is ready to become more than just a standalone service in 2015. Hoping to transition to a company with multiple products, IFTTT revealed today that it has created three entirely new ‘Do’ apps — Do Button, Do Camera, and Do Note — that let you personalize and execute your favorite IFTTT recipes with one tap.

To go along with the new apps that make it simply to automate your most common Internet tasks, IFTTT has rebranded its original app to just IF. The three new apps are kind of a mixture between Yo and Workflow, giving you a new level of control for favorite services and applications.

Here’s a quick look at each new app.

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Spring arrives early in David Hockney’s iPad art exhibition

David Hockney, Yosemite I, © 2013 David Hockney, used with permission de Young Museum.

David Hockney, Yosemite I, © 2013 David Hockney, used with permission de Young Museum.

The eastern U.S. is still getting pelted with snow, but spring is arriving a little early across the pond in Saltaire England thanks to David Hockney’s newest gallery of iPad artwork entitled ‘The Arrival of Spring.’

The famous pop artist’s exhibition of 33 pictures went on display today at the Salt Mill gallery in West Yorkshire. Each of the five-foot high framed pictures were drawn on Hockney’s iPad during the period when he lived in Bridlington and painted the Yorkshire woods for London’s Royal Academy.

Take a closer look at some of the piece below:

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Old flip-phones are the iPhone’s newest rival in Japan

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Are flip-phones making a comeback? Photo: Oscar Avellaneda-Cruz/Flickr CC

The iPhone has been killing it in Japan lately. Apple’s smartphone marketshare in the tech-obsessed country is continuing to dominate year-over-year, even though the company had a hard time giving out iPhones just five years ago.

With the iPhone 6’s bigger screen, the company is making more of an inroads than ever, but according to a report from Reuters, smartphones in Japan are facing stiff from competition from an unlikely suspect: flip-phones.

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Apple reveals new gorgeous West Lake store in China

West Lake Apple Store in Hangzhou. Photo: Foster + Partners

West Lake Apple Store in Hangzhou. Photo: Foster + Partners

Apple’s architectural firm, Foster + Partners, released pictures of the gorgeous new West Lake store in Hangzhou that was recently completed. The new Apple Store was covered by an incredible mural during construction, but the finished all-glass facade is even more stunning.

The firm says West Lake store was made in close collaboration between Apple and Foster + Partners’ engineers to create the perfect environment to view products. The end result is a 15-metre-high glazed box with a design that “combines an understanding of the local context with the philosophy of simplicity, beauty and technical innovation that characterises Apple’s products.”

Check out the store’s floating staircase below:

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Pricey gold Apple Watch could make $5 billion per quarter

38mm rose gold Apple Watch Edition. Photo: Apple

The high-end Apple Watch Edition could bring in the bulk of Cupertino’s revenue from wearables. Photo: Apple

The Apple Watch Edition has perplexed many Apple fanboys with its ridiculously high price tag. We still don’t know how much the beautiful, high-end smartwatch will cost, but it’s expected be one of the most expensive Apple products ever, which has a lot of analysts wondering, how many is Apple going sell?

The Wall Street Journal reported yesterday that only 17 percent of the first 5 million Apple Watch orders were for the pricey gold Edition. That number sounds almost insignificant, but Daring Fireball’s John Gruber did some math and found that Apple is expecting to sell about 1 million of the exorbitantly expensive timepieces per quarter.

Hitting 1 million in sales for the super-expensive smartwatches in the first quarter would be an impressive feat. But what’s more surprising is that if Apple actually hits that number, the gold Edition Apple Watches would account for the most Apple Watch revenue, bringing in at least $5 billion per quarter.

Here’s why:

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Civil rights activist John Lewis visits Tim Cook at Apple HQ

John-Lewis

Congressman John Lewis and Tim Cook and Apple HQ. Photo: Apple

Congressman John Lewis paid a visit to Tim Cook at Apple’s Cupertino campus today as part of the civil rights icon’s Northern California tour for his new book.

The Georgia lawmaker played a pivotal role in the bloody Selma march that’s back in the spotlight thanks to the its 50th anniversary and the Oscar-nominated film by the same name. Lewis was a guest speaker at Apple HQ today as part of the company’s celebration for Black History Month, and he met privately with Cook.

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Apple adds Macworld editor to growing stable of journalists

Macworld editor Chris Breen is headed to Cupertino. Photo: Macworld

Macworld editor Chris Breen is headed to Cupertino. Photo: Macworld

Apple’s is continuing to make big changes in the friendlier post-Kate Cotton PR era with the announcement today that Chris Breen, the long-time senior editor at Macworld, has been hired by the fruit-flavored tech company.

Breen has worked at both Macworld and MacUser, but is making the change to working at the mothership after decades of covering the company as an Apple journalist.

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Comcast’s new TV remote rips off Apple’s iconic tagline

Does this tagline look familiar? Photo: John Anthony/Twitter

Does this tagline look familiar? Photo: John Anthony/Twitter

Apple is no stranger to having competitors copy its style. Samsung, HP, and Xiaomi have all been caught in the act multiple times, but the last company we expected to rip off Apple is Comcast.

For its new cable remote, Comcast has taken a page out of Apple’s playbook by copying the company’s iconic “Designed by Apple in California” tagline. The copy job is so bad, they didn’t even bother to change the font. It looks like the words “Comcast” and “Philadelphia” were basically slapped over Apple’s original tagline after production.

Take a look at the ‘premium’ remote below:

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Apple Maps error covers up sad truth about disappearing Aral Sea

Apple's Aral Sea on left, NASA latest image on right. Photo: Cult of Mac

Apple’s Aral Sea on left, NASA latest image on right. Photo: Cult of Mac

You may have never heard of the Aral Sea, even though it was the fourth largest lake in the world as recently as the 1960’s.

The once-gigantic body of water which rests on the border of Uzbekistan has shrunk to less than 10% of its former size over the last half century. It’s been dubbed one of the worst environmental disasters ever, but looking at Apple Maps you’d never even know the Russians drained the mighty lake dry, destroyed its robust fishing industry, and left behind a wasteland of salt, pollution, and toxic dust storms.

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Touch ID might be coming soon to MacBooks, Magic Mice and trackpads

Touch ID is ready for an upgrade. Photo: Apple

Touch ID is ready for an upgrade. Photo: Apple

Touch ID has completely changed security on the iPhone, and now Apple’s fingerprint-scanning technology could soon be coming to the Mac.

Apple is planning to bring Touch ID to the upcoming 12-inch MacBook Air, according to sources at Taiwanese Apple blog Apple.Club.tw. In the past, the site successfully leaked the iPad Air 2 logic board, the Touch ID sensor and the iPhone 6 Lightning port, so it has a track record for accuracy. The site claims Apple has big plans for Touch ID in 2015 and wants to put it in everything from MacBook Pros to Magic Mice.

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